Arizona Ranks 10th Nationwide For Underemployment

Published: Wednesday, April 11, 2018 - 7:16pm

Teacher pay is dominating the conversation right now in Arizona. But, teaching is one of Arizona's many professions in which workers earn lower wages compared to other states.

It is called underemployment. It happens when a person is employed, but in a job that doesn’t pay a wage that matches his or her skills or is part-time when the person wants full-time.

Arizona ranks high for underemployed workers at 10th overall nationwide, according to the latest measure released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“There’s people out there who are working part-time, just because their hours have been cut, they can’t find any full-time work. A lot of times there are people that have, kind of, given up." said Matthew Insco, analyst for the Bureau.   

Insco said Arizona is improving post-recession. Since 2010, the underemployment rate in the state has dropped by half from 18.4 percent to 9.5. Arizona is still higher than the national rate of 8.5 percent. Alaska has the highest rate of underemployment at 13.7 percent. For western states, Nevada, New Mexico and California also rank in the top ten nationwide.

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